2019 Toyota 86

Performance


#7 out of 8 in Sports Cars

$26,505 MSRP
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2019 Toyota 86 Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 8.4

The 2019 Toyota 86 has very good overall performance, but it’s far from the best in this tough class. This coupe’s engine power is just satisfactory, but its dynamic handling makes up for that shortcoming. Fuel economy is decent for the class.

  • "This is one of those cars where even going out for a carton of milk seems like an adventure, especially if you take a twisting route usually frequented by motorcyclists on the weekends." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • The 86 has moves like Jagger but an engine that struggles to get the stone rolling. We love the way the 86 drives through turns thanks to its classic rear-wheel-drive balance and effortless steering. It just needs a more powerful and refined engine to keep up with today's best sport coupes." -- Edmunds
  • "The 86 is one of those cars that doesn't have to be driven fast to be enjoyable. It can make even a trip to the grocery store more fun. Quick, well-weighted steering provides good feedback that is bettered by only a few sports cars. With little body lean in corners, the 86 feels agile and responsive, and remains composed even through bumpy turns. Differences between the 86 and BRZ are minor, with the 86 being slightly more responsive and having better on-center steering feedback; few drivers would notice the difference. A tight, 38-foot turning circle helps with maneuverability." -- Consumer Reports (2018)

Acceleration and Power

The Toyota 86 has a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. Paired with a standard six-speed manual transmission, the engine produces 205 horsepower. The optional six-speed automatic lowers horsepower to 200. Most critics think the 86 has enough engine power and responsive acceleration, though some find it underwhelming.

For 2019, the 86 gets up to 24 mpg in the city and 32 mpg in the highway with its automatic transmission, which is OK for the class. The manual transmission returns a less impressive 21 mpg city and 28 mpg highway.

  • "Most damning is that the 86 simply lacks power and looks faster at idle that it actually is." -- Edmunds
  • "The 86 (named after a 1980s' cult version of the Corolla) is small, light, agile and relatively quick considering its 205-horsepower engine is hardly bursting with muscle." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The only engine available is a 205-hp, 2.0-liter horizontally-opposed four-cylinder. Acceleration isn't lightning quick, but it is plenty responsive. 0-60 mph times in the low seven-second range are nothing to scoff at and the drivetrain's character is well matched to the car. Most of our enthusiast drivers didn't think the car needs more power." -- Consumer Reports (2018)

Handling and Braking

The Toyota 86 comes standard with rear-wheel drive. Steering is sharp and precise through turns, and the suspension is stiff. That results in good feedback from the road, but it makes the ride slightly uncomfortable.

  • "The chassis is communicative and predictable, it relishes tight corners, and becomes a learning experience where the driver can experiment with things like braking late and letting the weight transfer help rotate the car before adding a touch of steering correction and mashing the throttle on the way to the next turn." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • The quick and precise steering rewards smooth driving, and well-damped feedback from the wheel communicates how much grip you have at the front wheels. It's the kind of steering you'd hope to get from a back-to-basics car like this. … Thanks to a stiff chassis, you can feel each corner of the car keeping its respective tire on the ground. Wheel motions are a little too quick to be considered comfortable, and the 86 shimmies on roads with undulations. You'll feel all the bumps and road imperfections." -- Edmunds
  • "But these rear-wheel-drive coupes aren't about raw power or scrimping at the pump. Their magic comes from the super-sharp, agile handling and excellent braking that makes them so enticing to drive, whether on a track or a twisty, back-country road." -- Consumer Reports (2018)
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